Protected bike lanes coming to Congress Avenue in downtown Austin

Permanent protected bicycle lanes are coming to Congress Avenue in downtown Austin. Austin Transportation will install the bicycle lanes between Riverside Drive and 11th Street.

Project installation is scheduled to begin the week of September 20 and could take up to four weeks to complete, according to the city. 

The bicycle lanes will be protected using flexible delineator posts and parking stops, according to Austin City Council. Council also noted that access to all driveways and on-street parking will remain in place.


The design includes the following:

  • Protected bicycle lanes between Riverside Drive and 11th Street
  • New left-turn lanes at Cesar Chavez Street, 5th Street, and 6th Street Street with protected turn phases to reduce head-on crashes
  • Dedicated right-turn lanes at northbound Cesar Chavez Street, Barton Springs Road, and northbound Riverside Drive with yellow flashing right-turn arrows to increase yielding to people crossing the intersection
  • Shorter pedestrian crossing distances
  • Protected intersection designs at Riverside Drive, Barton Springs Road, 3rd Street, and 11th Street
  • Simplified lane configuration along Cesar Chavez Street between Congress Avenue and Brazos Street
  • Enhanced bicycle crossing markings in front of on-street parking locations


Earlier this summer, city staff installed temporary bicycle lanes to improve safety and to address COVID-19 risk-based guidelines. The temporary bicycle lanes were installed on June 30, 2020 and will remain on the street until the permanent bicycle lanes replace the temporary installation.

The new design will improve safety and comfort for people traveling on Congress Avenue, as well as address current crash patterns on the street, according to Austin City Council. Two of the top five high pedestrian crash intersections in downtown Austin are on Congress Avenue at Cesar Chavez Street and 6th Street.